National Hockey League
The National Hockey League is a professional ice hockey league in North America comprising 31 teams: 24 in the United States and 7 in Canada. The NHL is considered to be the premier professional ice hockey league in the world, one of the major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada; the Stanley Cup, the oldest professional sports trophy in North America, is awarded annually to the league playoff champion at the end of each season. The National Hockey League was organized on November 26, 1917, at the Windsor Hotel in Montreal after the suspension of operations of its predecessor organization, the National Hockey Association, founded in 1909 in Renfrew, Ontario; the NHL took the NHA's place as one of the leagues that contested for the Stanley Cup in an annual interleague competition before a series of league mergers and folds left the NHL as the only league left competing for the Stanley Cup in 1926. At its inception, the NHL had four teams—all in Canada, thus the adjective "National" in the league's name.
The league expanded to the United States in 1924, when the Boston Bruins joined, has since consisted of American and Canadian teams. From 1942 to 1967, the league had only six teams, collectively nicknamed the "Original Six"; the NHL added six new teams to double its size at the 1967 NHL expansion. The league increased to 18 teams by 1974 and 21 teams in 1979. Between 1991 and 2000, the NHL further expanded to 30 teams, it added its 31st team in 2017 and has approved the addition of a 32nd team in 2021. The league's headquarters have been in New York City since 1989 when the head office moved there from Montreal. After a labour-management dispute that led to the cancellation of the entire 2004–05 season, the league resumed play in 2005–06 under a new collective agreement that included a salary cap. In 2009, the NHL enjoyed record highs in terms of sponsorships and television audiences; the International Ice Hockey Federation considers the Stanley Cup to be one of the "most important championships available to the sport".
The NHL draws many skilled players from all over the world and has players from 20 countries. Canadians have constituted the majority of the players in the league, with an increasing percentage of American and European players in recent seasons; the current NHL Champions are the Washington Capitals, who defeated the Vegas Golden Knights four games to one in the 2018 Stanley Cup Finals. The National Hockey League was established in 1917 as the successor to the National Hockey Association. Founded in 1909, the NHA began play one year with seven teams in Ontario and Quebec, was one of the first major leagues in professional ice hockey, but by the NHA's eighth season, a series of disputes with Toronto Blueshirts owner Eddie Livingstone led team owners of the Montreal Canadiens, Montreal Wanderers, Ottawa Senators, Quebec Bulldogs to hold a meeting to discuss the league's future. Realizing the NHA constitution left them unable to force Livingstone out, the four teams voted instead to suspend the NHA, on November 26, 1917, formed the National Hockey League.
Frank Calder was chosen as its first president, serving until his death in 1943. The Bulldogs were unable to play, the remaining owners created a new team in Toronto, the Arenas, to compete with the Canadiens and Senators; the first games were played on December 19, 1917. The Montreal Arena burned down in January 1918, causing the Wanderers to cease operations, the NHL continued on as a three-team league until the Bulldogs returned in 1919; the NHL replaced the NHA as one of the leagues that competed for the Stanley Cup, an interleague competition back then. Toronto won the first NHL title, defeated the Vancouver Millionaires of the Pacific Coast Hockey Association for the 1918 Stanley Cup; the Canadiens won the league title in 1919. Montreal in 1924 won their first Stanley Cup as a member of the NHL; the Hamilton Tigers, won the regular season title in 1924–25 but refused to play in the championship series unless they were given a C$200 bonus. The league refused and declared the Canadiens the league champion after they defeated the Toronto St. Patricks in the semi-final.
Montreal was defeated by the Victoria Cougars of the Western Canada Hockey League for the 1925 Stanley Cup. It was the last time a non-NHL team won the trophy, as the Stanley Cup became the de facto NHL championship in 1926 after the WCHL ceased operation; the National Hockey League embarked on rapid expansion in the 1920s, adding the Montreal Maroons and Boston Bruins in 1924. The Bruins were the first American team in the league; the New York Americans began play in 1925 after purchasing the assets of the Hamilton Tigers, were joined by the Pittsburgh Pirates. The New York Rangers were added in 1926; the Chicago Black Hawks and Detroit Cougars were added after the league purchased the assets of the defunct WCHL. A group purchased the Toronto St. Patricks in 1927 and renamed them the Maple Leafs; the first NHL All-Star Game was held in 1934 to benefit Ace Bailey, whose career ended on a vicious hit by Eddie Shore. The second was held in 1937 in support of Howie Morenz's family when he died of a coronary embolism after breaking his leg during a game.
The Great Depression and the onset of World War II took a toll on the league. The Pirates became the Philadelphia Quakers in 1930 folded one year later; the Senators became the St. Louis Eagles in 1934 lasting only one
The Soviet Union the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, was a socialist state in Eurasia that existed from 1922 to 1991. Nominally a union of multiple national Soviet republics, its government and economy were centralized; the country was a one-party state, governed by the Communist Party with Moscow as its capital in its largest republic, the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic. Other major urban centres were Leningrad, Minsk, Alma-Ata, Novosibirsk, it spanned over 10,000 kilometres east to west across 11 time zones, over 7,200 kilometres north to south. It had five climate zones: tundra, steppes and mountains; the Soviet Union had its roots in the 1917 October Revolution, when the Bolsheviks, led by Vladimir Lenin, overthrew the Russian Provisional Government which had replaced Tsar Nicholas II during World War I. In 1922, the Soviet Union was formed by a treaty which legalized the unification of the Russian, Transcaucasian and Byelorussian republics that had occurred from 1918. Following Lenin's death in 1924 and a brief power struggle, Joseph Stalin came to power in the mid-1920s.
Stalin committed the state's ideology to Marxism–Leninism and constructed a command economy which led to a period of rapid industrialization and collectivization. During his rule, political paranoia fermented and the Great Purge removed Stalin's opponents within and outside of the party via arbitrary arrests and persecutions of many people, resulting in at least 600,000 deaths. In 1933, a major famine struck the country. Before the start of World War II in 1939, the Soviets signed the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, agreeing to non-aggression with Nazi Germany, after which the USSR invaded Poland on 17 September 1939. In June 1941, Germany broke the pact and invaded the Soviet Union, opening the largest and bloodiest theatre of war in history. Soviet war casualties accounted for the highest proportion of the conflict in the effort of acquiring the upper hand over Axis forces at intense battles such as Stalingrad and Kursk; the territories overtaken by the Red Army became satellite states of the Soviet Union.
The post-war division of Europe into capitalist and communist halves would lead to increased tensions with the United States-led Western Bloc, known as the Cold War. Stalin died in 1953 and was succeeded by Nikita Khrushchev, who in 1956 denounced Stalin and began the de-Stalinization; the Cuban Missile Crisis occurred during Khrushchev's rule, among the many factors that led to his downfall in 1964. In the early 1970s, there was a brief détente of relations with the United States, but tensions resumed with the Soviet–Afghan War in 1979. In 1985, the last Soviet premier, Mikhail Gorbachev, sought to reform and liberalize the economy through his policies of glasnost and perestroika, which caused political instability. In 1989, Soviet satellite states in Eastern Europe overthrew their respective communist governments; as part of an attempt to prevent the country's dissolution due to rising nationalist and separatist movements, a referendum was held in March 1991, boycotted by some republics, that resulted in a majority of participating citizens voting in favor of preserving the union as a renewed federation.
Gorbachev's power was diminished after Russian President Boris Yeltsin's high-profile role in facing down a coup d'état attempted by Communist Party hardliners. In late 1991, Gorbachev resigned and the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union met and formally dissolved the Soviet Union; the remaining 12 constituent republics emerged as independent post-Soviet states, with the Russian Federation—formerly the Russian SFSR—assuming the Soviet Union's rights and obligations and being recognized as the successor state. The Soviet Union was a powerhouse of many significant technological achievements and innovations of the 20th century, including the world's first human-made satellite, the first humans in space and the first probe to land on another planet, Venus; the country had the largest standing military in the world. The Soviet Union was recognized as one of the five nuclear weapons states and possessed the largest stockpile of weapons of mass destruction, it was a founding permanent member of the United Nations Security Council as well as a member of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the World Federation of Trade Unions and the leading member of the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance and the Warsaw Pact.
The word "Soviet" is derived from a Russian word сове́т meaning council, advice, harmony and all deriving from the proto-Slavic verbal stem of vět-iti, related to Slavic věst, English "wise", the root in "ad-vis-or", or the Dutch weten. The word sovietnik means "councillor". A number of organizations in Russian history were called "council". For example, in the Russian Empire the State Council, which functioned from 1810 to 1917, was referred to as a Council of Ministers after the revolt of 1905. During the Georgian Affair, Vladimir Lenin envisioned an expression of Great Russian ethnic chauvinism by Joseph Stalin and his supporters, calling for these nation-states to join Russia as semi-independent parts of a greater union, which he named as the Union of Soviet Republics of Europe and Asia. Stalin resisted the proposal, but accepted it, although with Lenin's agreement changed the name of the newly proposed sta
Ice hockey is a contact team sport played on ice in a rink, in which two teams of skaters use their sticks to shoot a vulcanized rubber puck into their opponent's net to score points. The sport is known to be fast-paced and physical, with teams consisting of six players each: one goaltender, five players who skate up and down the ice trying to take the puck and score a goal against the opposing team. Ice hockey is most popular in Canada and eastern Europe, the Nordic countries and the United States. Ice hockey is the official national winter sport of Canada. In addition, ice hockey is the most popular winter sport in Belarus, the Czech Republic, Latvia, Slovakia and Switzerland. North America's National Hockey League is the highest level for men's ice hockey and the strongest professional ice hockey league in the world; the Kontinental Hockey League is much of Eastern Europe. The International Ice Hockey Federation is the formal governing body for international ice hockey, with the IIHF managing international tournaments and maintaining the IIHF World Ranking.
Worldwide, there are ice hockey federations in 76 countries. In Canada, the United States, Nordic countries, some other European countries the sport is known as hockey. Ice hockey is believed to have evolved from simple stick and ball games played in the 18th and 19th century United Kingdom and elsewhere; these games were brought to North America and several similar winter games using informal rules as they were developed, such as "shinny" and "ice polo". The contemporary sport of ice hockey was developed in Canada, most notably in Montreal, where the first indoor hockey game was played on March 3, 1875; some characteristics of that game, such as the length of the ice rink and the use of a puck, have been retained to this day. Amateur ice hockey leagues began in the 1880s, professional ice hockey originated around 1900; the Stanley Cup, emblematic of ice hockey club supremacy, was first awarded in 1893 to recognize the Canadian amateur champion and became the championship trophy of the NHL. In the early 1900s, the Canadian rules were adopted by the Ligue Internationale de Hockey sur Glace, the precursor of the IIHF and the sport was played for the first time at the Olympics during the 1920 Summer Olympics.
In international competitions, the national teams of six countries predominate: Canada, Czech Republic, Russia and the United States. Of the 69 medals awarded all-time in men's competition at the Olympics, only seven medals were not awarded to one of those countries. In the annual Ice Hockey World Championships, 177 of 201 medals have been awarded to the six nations. Teams outside the "Big Six" have won only five medals in either competition since 1953; the World Cup of Hockey is organized by the National Hockey League and the National Hockey League Players' Association, unlike the annual World Championships and quadrennial Olympic tournament, both run by the International Ice Hockey Federation. World Cup games are played under NHL rules and not those of the IIHF, the tournament occurs prior to the NHL pre-season, allowing for all NHL players to be available, unlike the World Championships, which overlaps with the NHL's Stanley Cup playoffs. Furthermore, all 12 Women's Olympic and 36 IIHF World Women's Championships medals were awarded to one of these six countries.
The Canadian national team or the United States national team have between them won every gold medal of either series. In England, field hockey has been called "hockey" and what was referenced by first appearances in print; the first known mention spelled as "hockey" occurred in the 1773 book Juvenile Sports and Pastimes, to Which Are Prefixed, Memoirs of the Author: Including a New Mode of Infant Education, by Richard Johnson, whose chapter XI was titled "New Improvements on the Game of Hockey". The 1573 Statute of Galway banned a sport called "'hokie'—the hurling of a little ball with sticks or staves". A form of this word was thus being used in the 16th century, though much removed from its current usage; the belief that hockey was mentioned in a 1363 proclamation by King Edward III of England is based on modern translations of the proclamation, in Latin and explicitly forbade the games "Pilam Manualem, Pedivam, & Bacularem: & ad Canibucam & Gallorum Pugnam". The English historian and biographer John Strype did not use the word "hockey" when he translated the proclamation in 1720, instead translating "Canibucam" as "Cambuck".
According to the Austin Hockey Association, the word "puck" derives from the Scottish Gaelic puc or the Irish poc. "... The blow given by a hurler to the ball with his camán or hurley is always called a puck." Stick-and-ball games date back to pre-Christian times. In Europe, these games included the Irish game of hurling, the related Scottish game of shinty and versions of field hockey. IJscolf, a game resembling colf on an ice-covered surface, was popular in the Low Countries between the Middle Ages and the Dutch Golden Age, it was played with a wooden curved bat, a wooden or leather ball and two poles, with t
NHL Entry Draft
The NHL Entry Draft is an annual meeting in which every franchise of the National Hockey League systematically select the rights to available ice hockey players who meet draft eligibility requirements. The NHL Entry Draft is held once every year within two to three months after the conclusion of the previous season. During the draft, teams take turns selecting amateur players from junior or collegiate leagues and professional players from European leagues; the first draft was held in 1963, has been held every year since. The NHL Entry Draft was known as the NHL Amateur Draft until 1979; the entry draft has only been a public event since 1980, a televised event since 1984. Up to 1994, the order was determined by the standings at the end of the regular season. In 1995, the NHL Draft Lottery was introduced where only teams who had missed the playoffs could participate; the one lottery winner would move up the draft order a maximum of four places, meaning only the top five-placed teams could pick first in the draft, no team in the non-playoff group could move down more than one place.
The chances of winning the lottery were weighted towards the teams at the bottom of the regular season standings. Beginning in 2013, the limit of moving up a maximum of four places in the draft order was eliminated, so the lottery winner would automatically receive the first overall pick, any teams above it in the draft order would still move down one spot; the first NHL Entry Draft was held on June 5, 1963 at the Queen Elizabeth Hotel in Quebec. Any amateur player under the age of 20 was eligible to be drafted. In 1979, the rules were changed allowing players who had played professionally to be drafted; this rule change was made to facilitate the absorption of players from the defunct World Hockey Association. The name of the draft was changed from "NHL Amateur Draft" to "NHL Entry Draft". Beginning in 1980, any player, between the ages of 18 and 20 is eligible to be drafted. In addition, any non-North American player over the age of 20 can be selected. From 1987 through 1991, 18 and 19-year-old players could only be drafted in the first three rounds unless they met another criterion of experience which required them to have played in major junior, U.
S. college and high school, or European hockey. In 1980, the Entry Draft became a public event, was held at the Montreal Forum. Prior to that year the Entry Draft was conducted in Montreal hotels or league offices and was closed to the general public; the first draft outside of Montreal was held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre in Toronto, Ontario, in 1985. Live television coverage of the draft began in 1984 when the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation covered the event in both English and French for Canadian audiences; the 1987 Entry Draft, held at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, was the first NHL Draft to be held in the United States. SportsChannel America began covering the event in the United States in 1989. Prior to the development of the Draft, NHL teams sponsored junior teams, signed prospects in their teens to the junior teams. Players were signed to one of three forms: the "A" form; the "C" form could only be signed by the player at age eighteen or by the player's parents in exchange for some signing bonus.
The first drafts were held to assign players who had not signed with an NHL organization before the sponsorship of junior teams was discontinued after 1968. The selection order in the NHL Entry Draft is determined by a combination of lottery, regular season standing, playoff results. While teams are permitted to trade draft picks both during the draft and prior to it, in all cases, the selection order of the draft picks is based on the original holder of the pick, not a team which may have acquired the pick via a trade or other means; the order of picks discussed in this section always references the original team. The basic order of the NHL Entry Draft is determined based on the standings of the teams in the previous season; as with the other major sports leagues, the basic draft order is intended to favour the teams with the weakest performance who need the most improvement in their roster to compete with the other teams. Subject to the results of the NHL Draft Lottery, the teams pick in the same order each round, with each team getting one pick per round.
The basic order of the picks is determined as follows: The teams that did not qualify for the playoffs the previous season The teams that made the playoffs in the previous season but did not win either their division in the regular season or play in the Conference Finals The teams that won their divisions in the previous season but did not play in the Conference Finals The teams that lose in Conference Finals The team, the runner-up in the Stanley Cup Finals The team that won the Stanley Cup in the previous season The number of teams in the second and third group depends on whether the Conference finalists won their division. The teams in each group are ordered within that group based on their point totals in the preceding regular season. Tie-breakers are governed by the same rule
HC Spartak Moscow
HC Spartak Moscow is a professional ice hockey team based in Moscow, Russia. They played in the Tarasov Division of the Kontinental Hockey League during the 2013–14 season. However, the team did not participate in the KHL league for the 2014–15 season because of financial issues, but rejoined the league prior to the 2015–16 season as members of the Bobrov Division. One of the sections of the Spartak Moscow sports club, HC Spartak Moscow was established in 1946, they have won the Soviet Championship four times, have had European-level success in the Spengler Cup, which they have won five times. The financial state of the team became worse and worse since the beginning of 2006. After the season, a Russian businessman and huge Spartak fan, Vadim Melkov, volunteered to find suitable sponsorship for his favorite team. After negotiations, the Government of Moscow agreed to cover all of team debts; some preliminary agreements about team sale were achieved as well. However, Melkov died during the S7 Airlines plane crash of July 9, 2006.
All the deal proposals were cancelled. After a month of struggling to improve the financial situation, it was decided by Spartak management to disband the team for a year. Soviet League Championship: 1961–62, 1966–67, 1968–69, 1975–76 USSR Cup: 1970, 1971 Vysshaya Liga Championship: 2001 European Cup: 1969–70, 1976–77 Spengler Cup: 1980, 1981, 1985, 1989, 1990 Ahearne Cup: 1971, 1972, 1973 Moscow Mayor Cup: 2009, 2015 Note: GP = Games played, W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, OTL = Overtime/Shootout Losses, Pts = Points, GF = Goals for, GA = Goals against Updated January 31, 2019.'Note: GP = Games played.
Barnaul is a city and the administrative center of Altai Krai, located at the confluence of the Barnaulka and Ob Rivers in the West Siberian Plain. As of the 2010 Census, its population was 612,401. Barnaul is located in the forest steppe zone of the West Siberian Plain, on the left bank of the Ob River, at the confluence of the Barnaulka and Ob Rivers. Barnaul is the closest major city to the Altai Mountains to the south; the border with Kazakhstan is 345 kilometers to the southwest. The city is situated close to the borders with Mongolia and China; the humid continental climate of Barnaul is defined by its geographical position at the southern end of the Siberian steppe: it is subject to long winters, with an average of −15.5 °C in January, but enjoys a short warm season in the summer with an average temperature of +19.9 °C in July. Temperatures can vary from below − 45 °C in the winter to above +35 °C in the summer; the climate is dry. The average precipitation in the area is 433 millimeters per year, 75% of which occurs during the region's warmer season.
The area around the city has been inhabited by modern humans and Denisovans, for hundreds of thousands of years. They settled here to take advantage of the confluence of the rivers, used for transportation and fishing. In the late BC millennia, the locality was a centre of activity for Scythian and various Turkic peoples. While 1730 is considered Barnaul's official establishment date, its first mention dates back to 1724, it was granted city status in 1771. Chosen for its proximity to the mineral-rich Altai Mountains and its location on a major river, it was founded by the wealthy Demidov family; the Demidovs wanted to develop the copper in the mountains, soon found substantial deposits of silver as well. In 1747, the Demidovs' factories were taken over by the Crown. Barnaul became the center of silver production of the entire Russian Empire. In 1914, Barnaul was the site of the largest draft riot in Russia during World War I. There were more than 100 casualties from the fighting. Street fighting took place between anti-Communist White Russians and Reds during the Russian Civil War in 1918.
Maria Stepanovna was lived as a child in this city. She became the mother of American actresses Natalie Wood and Lana Wood, her father Stepan was killed in the 1918 street fighting between the Whites and Reds following the Revolution. Afterward her mother took her siblings as refugees to Harbin, China. Maria married a Russian there, they had a daughter Olga together. Maria immigrated with Olga to the United States, where she married another Russian immigrant, from Vladivostok, had two daughters with him. Over half of the light ammunition used by the Soviet Union in World War II is estimated to have been manufactured in Barnaul. Barnaul is the administrative center of the krai. Within the framework of administrative divisions, it is, together with the work settlement of Yuzhny and twenty-four rural localities, incorporated as the city of krai significance of Barnaul—an administrative unit with the status equal to that of the districts; as a municipal division, the city of krai significance of Barnaul is incorporated as Barnaul Urban Okrug.
Barnaul is an important industrial center of Western Siberia. There are more than 100 industrial enterprises in the city, employing 120,000 people. Leading industries include carbon processing. There are a lot of Higher Universities with good training bases so the city has a strong working potential. Now the old city centre is reconstructing to have a touristic cluster with a brandname "Barnaul is a mining town". Barnaul lies at a junction of the Novosibirsk–Almaty and Biysk train lines; the city is served by Barnaul Airport, located 15 kilometres west of Barnaul. Barnaul is twinned with: Flagstaff, United States Zaragoza, Spain Ust-Kamenogorsk, Kazakhstan Changji Hui Autonomous Prefecture, China Uberlandia, Brazil Andrei Svechnikov, hockey player. Решение №789 от 20 июня 2008 г. «Устав городского округа — города Барнаула Алтайского края», в ред. Решения №766 от 31 марта 2017 г. «О внесении изменений в Устав городского округа — города Барнаула Алтайского края ». Вступил в силу со дня официального опубликования.
Опубликован: "Вечерний Барнаул", №103, 15 июля 2008 г. (Barnaul City Duma. Decision #789 of June 20
Kontinental Hockey League
The Kontinental Hockey League is an international professional ice hockey league founded in 2008. It comprises 25 member clubs based in Belarus, Finland, Kazakhstan and Slovakia and it is planned to expand to more countries, it is considered to be the premier professional ice hockey league in Europe and Asia, second in the world behind the National Hockey League. KHL has the third highest average attendance in Europe with 6,121 spectators per game in the regular season, the highest total attendance in Europe with 5.32 million spectators in the regular season. The Gagarin Cup is awarded annually to the league playoff champion at the end of each season; the title of Champion of Russia is given to the highest ranked Russian team. The league formed from the Russian Superleague and the champion of the 2007–08 season of the second division, with 24 teams: 21 from Russia and one each from Belarus and Kazakhstan; the teams were divided based on the performance in previous seasons. The start of the fourth season was overshadowed by the Yaroslavl air disaster on 7 September 2011 in which all members of the team Lokomotiv Yaroslavl lost their lives shortly after take-off for their flight to their season opening game in Minsk.
The Opening Cup game in Ufa, under way when news of the disaster arrived, was suspended. In memory of the disaster, 7 September remains a day of mourning on which no KHL regular season games are held. In the 2009–10 season, Avtomobilist Yekaterinburg joined the KHL and Khimik Voskresensk was transferred to a lower league. Next season, Yugra Khanty-Mansiysk joined the league. After several attempts by teams from Central Europe and Scandinavia to join the KHL, expansion beyond the borders of the former Soviet Union was realized in 2011. Lev Poprad, a newly founded team based in Poprad, Slovakia was admitted to the league, but after only one season, Lev was replaced by a team of the same name, Lev Praha, from Prague, Czech Republic, while Slovan Bratislava from Bratislava and Ukraine's Donbass from Donetsk joined the KHL as expansion teams for the 2012–13 season. Lev and Slovan qualified for the playoffs in their first KHL season. In 2013, Medveščak from Zagreb, Croatia playing in the Austrian Hockey League, Russian expansion team Admiral Vladivostok joined the league, thus expanding the league further.
The league comprised 28 teams during the 2013–14 season, of which 21 were based in Russia and 7 located in the other countries. In 2014, Finnish team Jokerit from Helsinki, Lada Togliatti, newly created team HC Sochi joined the league. However, HC Donbass did not play in the league for the 2014–15 season, due to the political instability in Ukraine, but had intended to rejoin later. Two other teams, Lev Praha and Spartak Moscow withdrew from the 2014–15 season due to financial problems. Prior to the 2015–16 season, Atlant Moscow Oblast withdrew from the KHL due to financial issues, while Spartak Moscow returned after a one-year hiatus; the newly created Chinese club HC Kunlun Red Star from Beijing was admitted for the 2016–17 season. Prior to the 2017–18 season, Medveščak Zagreb withdrew from the league to rejoin the Austrian league and Metallurg Novokuznetsk was sent down to the VHL. Since 2009, the league has been divided into West conferences. In the current season, the Western Conference includes 14 teams divided into two divisions, 7 teams per division.
The Eastern Conference has 15 teams, divided into divisions of 8 respectively. In this season, each team played every other team once at home and once on the road, giving a total of 56 games, plus 4 additional games played by each team against rival clubs from its own conference. Thus, each team played a total of 60 games in the regular season; the eight top-ranked teams in each conference receive playoff berths. Within each conference quarterfinals and finals are played before the conference winners play against each other for the Gagarin Cup; the division winners are seeded first and second in their conference, based on their regular season record. All playoff rounds are played as best-of-seven series. In each round, the top seeded remaining team is paired with the lowest seeded team etc. In the 2012–13 season, the Nadezhda Cup was introduced, a consolation tournament for the teams who did not qualify for the playoffs; the winning team in the tournament wins the first overall pick in the KHL Junior Draft.
The tournament is intended to extend the season and help maintain interest in hockey in the cities of these teams, help players of national teams prepare for upcoming World Championships. Kontinental Hockey League on Google MapsAn asterisk denotes a franchise relocation. See the respective team articles for more information. Though now not as restrictive in maintaining an Russian composition of players and teams, Russian teams are still not allowed to sign more than five foreign players, while non-Russian teams must have at least five players from their respective country. Foreign goaltenders on Russian teams have a limit regarding total seasonal ice time. Prior to the inaugural season, several KHL teams signed several players from the NHL. A dispute between the two leagues over some of these signings was supposed to have been resolved by an agreement signed on July 10, 2008, whereby each league would honor the contracts of the other, but the signing of Alexander Radulov was made public one day after the agreement, leading to an investigation by the International Ice